“You get what you get and you don’t get upset.”
When I first heard my daughter repeat these words to her brother when he fussed over the popsicle color he was handed I thought it was pure genius. Who taught her to say and think this?!! What kind of Mary Poppins teaches children to accept what they are given without putting up a fight?
At that point my daughter was 3 and a fairly easy child. My son on the other hand was 5 and a fighter from the moment he came into the world. If he wanted an orange popsicle by God he was going to make sure you knew it and he got it.
Let me assure you, we did not give into his demands. He didn’t get this way because he always got his way. He came into the world with a willpower that is awe-inspiring and frightening.
Yes when he heard those words he responded. He didn’t take the popsicle he was handed but he did stop fighting for the orange one. He chose to stomp out of the room screaming and crying instead, railing against the injustice regularly served up in our home.
My son has not changed. At almost twelve he still insists his preferences are his preferences and will take nothing over “getting what he can get.” Its exhausting really.
But as I was sitting here working on some of the content for the upcoming Dream and Vision workshop I realize I’m teaching the attendees the exact opposite of what I wish my son would think, do and feel. I really wish he would just accept things as they are and not always be pushing for them to be different, better, something more.
When did I need him to start lowering his standards? Exactly the time his standards bumped up against my exhaustion.
So I guess my challenge is to figure out how to let him have his standards without needing to be the one that fulfills them. I’m not sure how I’m going to do that but I figure if I’m going to be sharing with an entire room full of women that the key to their happiness is to make space for dreaming and believing that their biggest most beautiful dreams are possible then I better help my son know that truth as well.
Maybe the key is you get what you get and you don’t get upset BUT you don’t stop wanting what you want and you keep going after it.